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by Stockwatch Business Reporter
West Texas Intermediate crude for March delivery added 92 cents to $54.23 on the New York Merc, while Brent for March added 33 cents to $61.65 (all figures in this para U.S.). Western Canadian Select traded at a discount of $8.85 to WTI, up from a discount of $9.90. Natural gas for March lost 10 cents to $2.85. The TSX energy index added 1.53 points to close at 150.43.
Li Ka-shing's Husky Energy Inc. (HSE) edged up one cent to $15.59 on 3.53 million shares, after receiving good news at its White Rose oil field off the coast of Newfoundland. The field has received regulatory approval to resume production. As investors will recall, White Rose made headlines 2-1/2 months ago when, during a vicious winter storm, a flowline connector to the SeaRose production vessel suffered a failure and leaked about 1,650 barrels of oil. The Canada-Newfoundland and Labrador Offshore Petroleum Board (C-NLOPB) said this spill was the largest in the province's history. The field was shut down on Nov. 15 so investigators could review the cause of the spill and Husky's reaction to it. There was some concern that this investigation would drag on for several months, mainly because the spill led to the second suspension of SeaRose's operations in less than a year. The previous incident had involved a close call with an iceberg. Given that record, Husky was thought to be in for a much longer and sterner scolding this time around. As recently as Jan. 23, the analysts at Canaccord Genuity said their estimates for Husky incorporated six months of downtime at White Rose.
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